Five football legends who have made their pick between Lionel Messi and Diego Maradona
For around a decade, Barcelona captain Lionel Messi, together with Juventus star Cristiano Ronaldo, has been at the heart of football's most hotly-contested argument.
However, the Argentine talisman is also fighting another battle; this time with compatriot and footballing legend Diego Maradona in the 'greatest Argentine footballer' debate.
At Barcelona, Messi emerged as one of the greatest football players in the game, boasting of 593 goals and 230 assists in 675 appearances for the club so far. The 31-year-old has eight La Liga titles and four Champions League titles to his name, as well as a record five Ballon d'Or awards.
These achievements are, however, continually overlooked by some, who believe the Blaugrana captain needs to win a major international title with Argentina to be considered the best between the two.
Maradona, on the other hand, has four FIFA World Cup titles to his name and is revered by the Argentina faithful for the achievements.
Here we take a look at five legends in the football world who have given their verdict on the longstanding debate:
#1 Sir Alex Ferguson
Sir Alex Ferguson, who is known as the most successful manager in English football's history, has applauded Maradona's career but believes that Messi is the better player between the two.
Speaking before a La Liga game between Barcelona and Girona FC in January, the former Manchester United manager told The Times (via Sport English), "Maradona's career at the top of football was only a few years. That said, I would side with Souness, who said that Messi is a better player than Maradona for this reason."
Ferguson won a staggering thirteen Premier League titles and two Champions League trophies during his time at Old Trafford and has faced the wrath of Messi a number of times in Europe.